Chemicals Management

DS Smith Chemicals Management, April 2018

We at DS Smith work hard to continuously improve, to implement best practice in our manufacturing processes, and to ensure that our business model remains sustainable and responsible, both for our environment and our people. The use of hazardous chemicals in manufacturing has been an area of increasing focus over the last few years, particularly for manufacturers of plastic goods. We fully support the EU REACH regulations, which are in place to manage the risks associated with the use of hazardous chemicals, and we take a proactive approach to implementing the standards set by REACH. 

Within our plastics division, we have focussed on identifying and eliminating Substances of Very High Concern (SVHCs) from the manufacturing process. We understand that plastic manufacturing sites can potentially carry some risks related to hazardous chemicals. Accordingly, we have worked to review and analyse the presence of SVHCs across the entire DS Smith Plastics Division.

We are pleased to report that as of March 2018, we have confirmed that zero SVHCs are present in any of DS Smith Plastics’ products. We identified only two substances of concern stored or used across all Plastics manufacturing sites. One of these substances is used in water treatment, whilst the other is an adhesive remover used for cleaning machinery.  The results are shown in more detail below:

Substance brand name

CAS Number(s)

Chemical of concern

Storage quantity

Annual usage
(per site)

Oxscav 35


Cobalt sulfate

500 litres

1000-1800 litres

Multitreat 25f


Cobalt sulfate

200 litres

2000 litres

RS Adhesive Remover



20 litres

100 litres


RS Adhesive Remover has already been eliminated at sites where it was present, and we are looking into substitution options for the two water treatment products containing cobalt sulfate.

The positive results shown by our Plastics Division are extremely encouraging. Going forward, we will work to continually improve our chemicals management across the Group, to implement best practice across our entire business, and to lead the way in sustainability.

To facilitate this, we have recently published an updated REACH policy which details plans to review and risk-assess SVHC presence across the Group. In accordance with the updated policy, hazardous chemical surveys will be conducted biennially and, where possible, identified substances of concern will be reviewed for substitution or elimination.